Monday, January 25, 2010

Review: Ten Mile River by Paul Griffin

I picked up Ten Mile River in passing at my library. The cover looked cool, NYC in blue-ish tint, so I put it on the pile. And I'm glad I did.

Ten Mile River is the story of two juvenile delinquent teens; the book opens with "Ray is bigger, but Jose is boss," which sums up perfectly what it's all about. Ray is smarter (he reads Scientific American), but feels obligated to Jose, who is his foster brother. The two are hiding out in an abandoned stationhouse in NYC's Ten Mile River Park, surviving by stealing, hiding out from the worldf and the law in particular.

But then Ray meets beautiful Trini, who wants the foster brothers to go straight. The rest of the book follows their struggle with loyalty to one another while trying to find their own identity.

I have to admit that it took me a bit to get used to the dialogue ("Howzabout our money?" and "Git up," and those were the clean lines), and think it got in the way of the story sometimes. But the solid characters (Ray is golden), and gritty storytelling were right up my alley. No mystery, but I think it qualifies as crime fiction. Ten Mile River gets a 4.

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